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Lancet. 1988 Feb 20;1(8582):403-6.

Subcutaneous apomorphine in parkinsonian on-off oscillations.

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Department of Neurology, Faculty of Clinical Sciences, Middlesex.


Subcutaneous apomorphine, a dopamine agonist, was given by continuous infusion during the day or by repeated injections to 19 patients with Parkinson's disease disabled by severe on-off fluctuations. All patients were also given domperidone. The 11 patients treated by infusion showed marked and sustained improvement, and their mean duration of daily off periods over a period of 15 months fell by 6.3 h; similar results were obtained in 8 patients with less severe disabilities who were given repeated apomorphine injections. The therapeutic response to apomorphine was similar to that seen with intravenous levodopa; in patients treated by infusion the mean daily levodopa dose was reduced by 209 mg. These results confirm that during off periods dopamine receptors remain responsive to stimulation and provide evidence of a new, effective, and well-tolerated treatment for the most disabling complication of long-term levodopa therapy.

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